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Thread: Driving in NZ

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    NZ
    Posts
    6

    Default Driving in NZ

    Hi all,

    I have NZ resident visa and I arrived here in mid 2016. I stayed in NZ for two and a half years. During this stay I did not drive in NZ. Afterwards I have to go to my home country for few months. Now I am back in NZ and I have a valid driving license from my home country. Please let me know can I drive a car in NZ using my overseas license for next few months till I apply for conversion? My home country license is not included in the exempted countries list.
    I am bit confused because my friend told me I can not drive because I stayed longer than a year in NZ earlier (two and a half year).
    Please give your suggestions.
    Thanks,
    Sarah

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Dairy Flat, Auckland
    Posts
    1,747

    Default

    As you were in New Zealand for 2 and a half years you cannot use your home license. See here for all the details

    https://www.nzta.govt.nz/driver-lice...river-licence/


    When I first came over if I left the country even for a couple of days the 12 months would start again on my return but I think that may have changed as I cannot see any mention of that but someone else may know for certain.Of course if you never left NZ at all then that does not apply'

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Nov 2017
    Location
    New Zealand
    Posts
    69

    Default

    I had asked AA last year in March 2018. They told that calculation begins each time you come to NZ. It does not make sense for e.g. for someone in a visitor visa to apply for NZ licence on basis of period stayed in past.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2014
    Location
    NZ
    Posts
    6

    Default

    Thank you Dave and VedSaumya for the reply.
    I have also asked VTNZ office, they said I may drive for 12 months (from the date of my recent arrival). NZTA Fact sheet-56 also mentions the same but at the same time this sheet also mentions that a person staying longer than one year can not drive using overseas driving license. I am confused I stayed longer than a year previously but I did not drive in NZ. Now I am back in NZ will my 12 months count starts again or I can not drive altogether using overseas license?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    35,683

    Default

    I believe the clock resets to zero whenever you go out of NZ, no matter how many times.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2015
    Location
    Auckland
    Posts
    27

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by sarah12 View Post
    Hi all,

    I have NZ resident visa and I arrived here in mid 2016. I stayed in NZ for two and a half years. During this stay I did not drive in NZ. Afterwards I have to go to my home country for few months. Now I am back in NZ and I have a valid driving license from my home country. Please let me know can I drive a car in NZ using my overseas license for next few months till I apply for conversion? My home country license is not included in the exempted countries list.
    I am bit confused because my friend told me I can not drive because I stayed longer than a year in NZ earlier (two and a half year).
    Please give your suggestions.
    Thanks,
    Sarah
    As you hold NZ resident visa, i strongly believe you are required to hold a NZ driver licence. 12 months reset is for temporary visa holders such as work visa, visitor visa etc.
    Last edited by My New Zealand; 1st September 2019 at 10:45 PM.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Dairy Flat, Auckland
    Posts
    1,747

    Default

    I think the best way for you to find out for certain is to contact NZTA Directly, not VTNZ or any other agent as it is best to get it from the source. You can contact them on 0800 822 422 and explain your situation and that you were in a period of more than 12 months in NZ. Explain you never drove and that you left and came back recently and see what they say. You need to clear up the part where you were in NZ for more than 12 months without leaving. I am sure they will be able to advise.

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